Prather Ranch’s primary herd was established in 1964 in the shadow of Mt. Shasta in northern California. Approximately 70% of the cattle herd is “certified organic” by California Certified Organic Farmers (CCOF) and the balance of the herd is a “natural” herd operation. The primary cattle herd has been closed on the maternal side since 1975 -- no new cows for more than 30 years! Instead, the ranch carefully developed the breeding program to maintain a healthy cattle herd. Cows are artificially inseminated (AI) with semen from registered bulls and backed up by ranch-raised bulls chosen from the closed herd.
Prather Ranch is a vertically integrated cattle operation. The cattle have never been fed animal protein products or growth hormones – they graze on natural and organic irrigated pastures until they are moved to the feed yard. There, they are fed a balanced diet of forage and grain produced on the ranch. In order to safeguard the cattle herd, in 1992, a backup closed herd was developed and is also “certified organic” by CCOF. The backup herd is managed under the same protocols as the primary herd.
Safety of the cattle is a main concern and the ranch takes extensive precautions – from coordinating with neighboring ranches to carefully designing and maintaining the fence lines to prevent the interaction of the ranch’s cattle herd with outside livestock and deer.
A Philosophy of Respect
Respect is at the core of everything we do at Prather Ranch:
- Respect for the people who use materials from the ranch. Prather Ranch is committed to providing the safest, highest-quality bovine materials available, and backing them up with expertise and quality service.
- Respect for the cattle that provide the materials. Prather Ranch cattle are treated humanely through their entire lifespan. Gentle handling is essential to the ranch’s practice to produce healthy cattle for high-quality materials.
- Respect for the procedures and practices that ensure quality and safety. Compliance to international standards is vital to provide high quality materials to clients. Prather Ranch is dedicated to adhering to the procedures established in 1990 as a bovine raw material supplier. By adopting these steps and technologies Prather Ranch ensures safety, quality, regulatory compliance and traceability that meet or exceed industry standards.